If you’re like most experienced smokers, you have either tried or longed for the incredible taste of a genuine Cuban cigar. Even though the embargo against Cuba has become less restrictive, and you can now legally bring $100 worth of tasty Cuban cigars back to the States, you still can’t buy them locally. Thankfully, here at JR, we stock a ton of premium cigars that rival, or beat the quality of many of these forbidden pleasures, and, many of them are quite affordable, so we’ve compiled a few that will quench your hunger for a genuine Cuban cigar without putting a dent in your wallet!
Maria Mancini Cigars
One of our oldest and most trusted brands, Maria Mancini Cigars, have been a top-seller here at JR for close to 30-years. Featured in two wrapper shades, this Cuban-style, box-pressed smoke, dressed in a stunning Habano2000 wrapper, is creamy, dense, well packed, and loaded with spicy, nutty and peppery components, while the jet- black Costa Rican Maduro wrappers introduce some chocolate and espresso notes into the mix. Like many Cuban cigars, both affordable offerings are medium to full-bodied in strength, yet smooth and well-refined on the palate.
Bolivar Cofradia Cigars
Another oldie but goodie that’s been a JR fan favorite since the early ’90s, the Bolivar Cofradia cigars are crafted by world-renowned cigar legend Estelo Padron, so you know you’re in for a real Cuban-style treat! Available in both EMS and Maduro shade wrappers, the result is bold medium to full-bodied flavors of earth, coffee, leather, and spice, with a little more chocolate and peppery tones found in the Maduro variety. This affordable Cubanesque brand remains one of the best cigar deals out there.
La Gloria Cubana Cigars
One of the closest flavor profiles to a genuine Cuban cigar comes from the world famous La Gloria Cubana cigars. It seemed like yesterday when the cigar masses first smoked this well-kept secret called La Gloria Cubana, a full-bodied premium handmade cigar that Ernesto Carrillo crafted for the locals at his small factory in Miami, Florida. The rest is history, as the popularity of this relatively indigenous brand become one the best-selling cigars on the planet after being discovered by Cigar Aficionado in 1993. If you have no current plans on traveling abroad to smoke a genuine Cuban cigar, these scrumptious handmade premium beauties will save you a lot of time and money while offering you a bevy of rich, earthy, nutty, and peppery tobacco flavors.
El Rey del Mundo Cigars
Meaning “king of the world,” El Rey del Mundo is a fitting name considering that the brand has featured some the cigar industry’s best smokes since it was established in pre-revolution Cuba in 1882. Now produced in Honduras and Nicaragua, El Rey del Mundo cigars have remained true to their Cuban heritage roots by offering a smorgasbord of bold and delicious flavors including spice, leather, coffee, earth, cream, chocolate, and more, depending on which selection that you choose. Available in a staggering array of shapes and sizes, these top-shelf smokes will surely suffice when a genuine Cuban cigar is not available to you.
Gispert Intenso Cigars
An exciting, more robust line extension to the popular Honduran Gispert brand, Gispert Intenso cigars are a collaboration between the famed Grupo de Maestros from Altadis U.S.A and cigar legend AJ Fernandez. Intenso, the first Gispert made in Nicaragua, uses a very dark and oily Connecticut Broadleaf wrapper atop a three-nation blend of the finest aged tobaccos to attain its incredibly complex full-bodied character. And, with their incomparable blending and rolling skills, it should be no surprise that the Grupo de Maestros and AJ have also created a cigar with flawless construction, a slow burn, and mouthwatering flavors of chocolate, cinnamon, leather, and sweet spice. Gispert Intenso is one of those premium handmade gems that will make you forget that you were yearning for a genuine Cuban Cigar.
For our next blog, we’ll take a closeup look at some of the costlier high-end Cuban style cigars that capture the taste, character, and complexity that many think you can only find in smokes coming from the Island of Cuba— so stay tuned!